Hi all. I recently posted on social media that I have stopped using shampoo & conditioner. Thank you to everyone for your questions and comments. This blog is to inform those of you who are interested in doing this for yourselves. I will explain my process and address as many questions as I am able!
When I decided to try this out I did what we all do and googled "not washing your hair." After some research, I found a few blogs/articles from other women who do this (links at bottom of blog).
With this post, I'd like to cover all the questions people have asked me (there were some questions I did not find answers to in other blogs/articles).
WHAT'S THE PURPOSE?
First, my hair is thin and by that, I mean each individual strand is thin. I also have quite a lot of hair. I am always doing what I can to get more volume & fullness - teasing, Redken Rough Paste, baby powder and curling it.
Around the 2.5 - 3 week mark of not washing with shampoo, my hair started feeling the way I always wanted it to. Voluminous & full, soft, not oily, thick, tamable, un-staticy, wavier, is much more manageable and looks pretty dang good (at least that's what my friends have told me!).
I stopped using shampoo, conditioner & product about 3-4 weeks ago. From day 4 to about day 10, I really wanted to wash my hair. I used to be able to go about 3 (maybe 4) days without washing and using baby power on my roots everyday, but typically at that 3 or 4 day mark I couldn't go any longer without washing. I pushed through, people, and you can too! A photo of me from when I was still using shampoo compared to a photo of me about 3 weeks after not washing. (I do use a curling iron)
DOES YOUR HAIR/SCALP SMELL?
No, not at all. I have politely asked trusted friends to stick their noses in it. I can't 100% tell you that yours won't. Because we all have different diets and put different things into our bodies that come out of our pores (this could be another blog), I can't guarantee you that yours won't, but it's highly unlikely that your hair/scalp will smell. Trust me!
The important thing to remember with this is that you will be taking your scalp through a process of balancing it's pH level. If you have been using shampoo and hair products, your scalp is most likely creating excess oil because those products are drying it out. In the beginning your scalp may feel oilier than normal, but if you push through, the balance will come and your scalp won't produce near as much oil and will bring itself to a healthy pH balance and create amazing results for your beautiful locks.
Using baking soda and ACV (apple cider vinegar) will help.
Below I will lay out for you my process as best I remember it:
Day 4 - Wash with equal parts baking soda & water mixture, scrubbing roots with fingertips for about 2-3 minutes. Rinse out thoroughly. Then, with equal part mixture of ACV & water (I made the mixture in a little bowl and dipped the ends of my hair in it, up to 2-3 inches away from scalp). Rinse thoroughly. Let hair air dry or you can blow dry and proceed with styling if that's your jam.
Day 6 - Rinse hair with water, scrubbing scalp.
Day 8 - If you feel it necessary, repeat day 4. If you're okay with just rinsing with water, that is more ideal.
Day 11 - Repeat day 4.
After day 12, you should find a rhythm for yourself. Knowing when it's best to rinse with water, do the baking soda & ACV or just skip the rinse all together. The most important thing to remember when doing things like this is to listen to your body and inner voice. Your answer is always inside of you. Like the times you ask someone, "Should I wear this shirt or that shirt?" And they respond with "That shirt." And you say, "I think I'll wear this one instead." You knew what you wanted/needed all along. This is a metaphor for all the other things in life. Trust your inner guidance!
A FEW KEY POINTS:
- There were quite a few days my hair felt oily in the beginning stages. You can use a bit of baby powder on your roots if you feel really uncomfortable with it. Don't use too much though, because it will dry out your scalp, making it want to produce more oil.
- Hats, ponytails & buns are good for the beginning too.
- Brush brush brush! I use a Mason Pearson brush. It's amazing. Brush from roots to ends in the morning and evening. This will bring the oils down from your scalp to your ends, nourishing your hair and making it softer and more flowy (made that word up).
- Put it back somehow while you sleep especially in the beginning stages because of the excess oil. This is not necessary, but just a suggestion.
- I've heard this works wonders for curly hair. It has made my hair more wavy.
- You will save money on products, use less water and not be bound by your hair washing routine. After 2-3 weeks, you will be free to wake up most days and not have to wash your hair. It's really freeing! This especially makes me think of all the musicians I know who tour a lot.
Please keep me updated on how this works out for you! You can do it! If you need guidance, feel free to reach out or comment below!